Sundanese Refugees Shot By Egyptians As Anti-migrant Fever Takes Hold

unnamedNov. 16 (GIN) – Egyptian border police shot and killed fifteen Sudanese asylum seekers and wounded eight in an uptick in the use of force against migrants fleeing political violence in their home countries.

The refugees were attempting to enter Israel on Sunday when they were gunned down by the Egyptian guards. Published reports said the victims were traveling with smugglers who traded shots with police.

But an earlier version of the incident claimed that police fired directly at the Sudanese when they ignored warnings not to scale the border fence.

Immigrants and asylum seekers are confronting new bars to entry by some European countries or extensive delays as with the United States. Since the terror attacks in Paris on Friday, House Republicans led by presidential hopeful Ben Carson in the U.S. have threated to hold up federal funds earmarked for resettling 10,000 Syrian refugees.

In a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan, Carson urged congressional Republicans to “extinguish” Syrian resettlement programs, saying the United States “cannot, should not and must not accept any Syrian refugees.” Some 24 states have already pulled in the welcome mat, denying entry to all migrants.

The Friday night attacks on three sites in Paris left 129 dead and 99 wounded.

Ironically, Muslims themselves comprise the group most victimized both by Islamists such as ISIS and non-Muslim nativist groups, noted Yasser Louati of the Collective against Islamophobia in France. “Death threats are being sent to the Muslim authorities, Muslim shops have been vandalized…Within 30 minutes of the attacks (in Paris), a right wing columnist started putting the blame on Muslims.”

“This is the utmost sign of indecency,” he said, then added: “At the same time we have received lots and lots of reports from non-Muslims saying we are in this together. You don’t have to justify yourself, you don’t have to feel guilty, they said. It was not you, it was them. We still have support on the other hand.”

Rather than shutting the doors to immigrants or flying more sorties to bomb supposed ISIS hideouts, new strategies are needed to defeat ISIS, said author and professor Vijay Prashad.

The attack on Paris was “an abomination”, he said, but it was only the latest in a series. He cited the recent ISIS attacks against Muslims in Turkey at a peace march; in Baghdad, the very weekend of the Paris attack; and in Beirut where there were two major suicide bombings – one of the largest attacks since the 1970s.

“This is a very important issue for the world, how to deal with ISIS,” he said. “Of course grief has to lead but we have to be very sober how we react to the provocations of ISIS and not play into their hands.”

Interviewed on a Paris street, a Frenchman of Algerian origin pessimistically predicted a rise in Islamophobia. “(Refugees) will be the first victims,” he said to the news show DemocracyNow. “The refugees will pay first. Second will be Muslims. Third will be everyone of Muslim descent; those from the Maghreb, Middle Easterners. But the refugees will be the first victims, that is sure.”

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